Something awful happened to me whilst I was on holiday last week.
I mean, something truly horrific.
Let’s set the scene.
There’s a warm blue pool with a large cave bar and a curling water slide. All around the edge of the pool are loungers filled with dozing or reading sunbathers. Over to my right is a loud speaker blasting out tunes while enthusiastic entertainment staff bounce up and down on the poolside, clapping their hands over their heads and encouraging the rum filled tourists to compete in press-up and boogie competition.
The pool directly in front of me is full of laughing toddlers covered in thick white sunblock, busily bobbing up and down in swim jackets and armbands, concentrating on pouring water from one cup to another or waving water pistols in the air with glee.
Towards the deeper end on my right the bronzed and tattooed twenty to thirty somethings are playing drinking games involving an inflatable, a ping pong ball and a lot of paper cups.
To my left the over fifties are watching the competition whilst staying back from the noise of the speakers, bodies more saggy and skin displaying a more ingrained brown tan.
That’s when I realised. I’m in the middle. Youth to the right, kids to the front and the elderly to my left. I’m sitting directly in the centre. I am no longer a youth, I’m not quite elderly.
I’m . . .
Good god, I can’t bring myself to write it.
I’m . . . ALMOST middle aged.
To try to stave off the shock and sudden feeling of nausea that washed over me like a cold wave from the Atlantic Ocean, I went to the cave bar in search of medicinal rum, Sackgirl propping me up from the side – I’d come over all faint!
As we walked into the bar a twenty something Canadian, all shiny teeth, toned muscle and stylish hair, turned round to Sackgirl and joked,
“Hey, you’re too young to be in here, honey.”
Seizing my moment I jumped in and joked back,
“Why yes, yes I am!”
Did I imagine the flash of pity or embarrassment that crossed his face before he smiled?
“Ah”, he twanged in his Canadian accent.
“I admire your confidence”.
I mentioned in a previous post that I didn’t handle my birthday too well this year. I struggled with 26, but was fine with 30. Now I am struggling with 36.
I don’t feel old. But I did notice a tendency to sensibly stop drinking rum in the sun before I got heat stroke and fell in the pool this year. And I found talking about kids with the other thirty to forty somethings more interesting than discussing how much booze I can handle with the youngsters.
Plus, I keep referring to them as youngsters.
I guess I have to face the fact I’m not in my twenties anymore. But I’m going to sulk about it.